March 18, 2022

Rare birds continuing into this week include Oriental Turtle-Dove (ABA Code 4) and Little Stint (4) in California, Social Flycatcher (5) and Golden-crowned Warbler (4) in Texas, and Black-faced Grassquit (4) in Florida.

The annual urge to move northward brings with it the potential for rare bird across the continent. We saw this in Washington, where a Red-flanked Bluetail (4) in King is arguably the most surprising vagrant in the ABA Area this week, and the 3rd for Washington. This bird almost certainly overwintered in the ABA Area and is responding to its internal clock causing it to intersect with a homeowner. Most records of this East Asian chat come from Alaska where it is annual in the Bering Sea, but there are a small handful of records from British Columbia through California as well.

And we stay in the pacific northwest for our 1st records this week. In Oregon, a Cave Swallow in Benton was a surprise, and the fact that it has been well-photographed even more-so. This represents the 1st for the state and only the 2nd record for the region.

Up to British Columbia, where a Whooper Swan (3) in Vancouver is a provincial 1st record, coming after a similar record in Washington of a still present individual.

We go all the way across the continent for the next noteworthy bird. Tis the season for interesting European vagrants to Atlantic Canada, and a Redwing (4) in St. John’s is a very nice find.

Connecticut’s 3rd record of Slaty-backed Gull was seen in Stratford.

New York had a Smith’s Longspur in Livingston, the state’s 5th.

Maryland has already had one Northern Lapwing (4) in the state this year, so a second in Dorchester was something of a surprise.

Omissions and errors are not intended, but if you find any please message blog AT and I will try to fix them as soon as possible. This post is meant to be an account of the most recently reported birds. Continuing birds not mentioned are likely included in previous editions listed here. Place names written in italics refer to counties/parishes.

Readers should note that none of these reports has yet been vetted by a records committee. All birders are urged to submit documentation of rare sightings to the appropriate state or provincial committees. For full analysis of these and other bird observations, subscribe to North American Birds, the richly illustrated journal of ornithological record published by the ABA.